Aftermarket Jam: Aftermarket Auto Parts Alliance Makes Beautiful Music at 2009 Convention

Aftermarket Jam: Aftermarket Auto Parts Alliance Makes Beautiful Music at 2009 Convention

The convention also featured 18 business seminars, all accredited by the University of the Aftermarket.

Nashville — Parts professionals at all levels must embrace the vehicle electronics revolution in order to take advantage of the opportunities they can provide to the aftermarket, said Frank Ordonez, vice president, Delphi Corp., and president of Delphi Product & Service Solutions. “We need to get this revolution going. There’s a lot of opportunity for us.”

Attendees of the Aftermarket Auto Parts Alliance 2009 convention in Nashville speak to a vendor on the show floor. Photo by Pat Garin, www.patgarinphotographer.com

Ordonez made his remarks at the general session of Aftermarket Auto Parts Alliance’s 2009 convention, dubbed “Aftermarket Jam 2009” in Nashville at the Gaylord Opryland hotel. More than 1,700 distributor shareholders, outside sales professionals, store managers and owners/managers of affiliated automotive service facilities attended March 4-8.

“Parts stores need the vehicle electronics product expertise,” said Ordonez, in order to take market share away from automotive dealerships. “Technicians are counting on the WDs, parts stores or the jobbers. They must have the right products on the shelf. Parts stores can be the specialists.”

There are three big ideas the aftermarket must embrace because they’re on the minds of the buying public, Ordonez said. They are: safety, staying connected and being green.

“They’ve come to expect they’ll walk away from nearly every accident,” Ordonez said. As a result, an average of $700 in safety equipment is added to every new vehicle.

Connectivity is another vastly evolving segment of the industry. Industry research shows that by 2010, 25-30% of vehicles will be equipped with telematics. Ordonez believes the key to making telematics successful for the aftermarket is to find a business model and make it comprehensive. Any telematics system, if it reports data to repair professionals, must be passive. “Consumers aren’t going to hook up their cell phone to upload data to us. It has to happen automatically.”

The third big idea — green — “is a subject on the minds of everyone,” Ordonez said. “Tighter regulations of carbon dioxide emissions are imminent.” The federal goal of 35 mpg by 2020 will require a 40% increase in efficiency. “We’re facing a significant challenge.” Diesel is a short-term way to lower emissions, Ordonez said.

“Why has a continent like Europe gone diesel the way it has? It’s 40% more efficient than the gasoline engine.”
Americans drive 60% of their time on the highways, which is where diesel is at its best, he said. On highways, hybrids autos are working on gasoline anyway. “Diesel is the quickest way to become more efficient and reduce emissions, but we also must move beyond this.” Ordonez pointed to compressed natural gas (CNG) and gas direct injection (GDI) vehicles, which provide higher fuel economy and fewer emissions, as methods to achieving the 35 mpg goal. “There’s still a lot to be done with gas engines,” he said.

The convention also featured 18 business seminars, all accredited by the University of the Aftermarket. More than 110 vendor booths filled about 70,000 square feet of the Gaylord Opryland’s exhibit hall. 

You May Also Like

FCS Introduces 42 New Numbers in May

Complete strut assemblies, shock absorbers, shock absorber assembly kits and suspension struts for popular VIO applications are included.

FCS Automotive announced the release of 42 new numbers in May, including:

8 Complete Strut Assemblies (936,389 vehicles in operation)

6 Shock Absorber Assembly Kits (2,696,801vehicles in operation)

16 Shock Absorbers (6,245,071 vehicles in operation)

12 Suspension Struts (2,135,974 vehicles in operation)

Philips Ultinon Drive 5000 LED Lightbar Line Expands

Lumileds has expanded the Philips Ultinon Drive 5000 series to include eight models.

DMA Adds New BrakeMaster Coverage

New coverage for Ford and Chevy includes popular pickup trucks and SUVs.

Akebono Expands Severe Duty Disc Brake Pad Kits

Akebono said it expanded its severe-duty ultra-premium disc brake pad line by 14 new part numbers.

GSP Releases New CV Axle Part Numbers

GSP said 14 new CV axle part numbers are in stock and ready to ship.

Other Posts

BCA Bearings Unveils 2024 Endless Summer Promotion

The Endless Summer promotion runs from May 1 through June 30, 2024.

PRT Launches 30 New Complete Strut Assemblies

The new items represent more than 10 million vehicles in new coverage, PRT said.

RNR Tire Express Hosts Mother’s Day Giveaway

The eighth-annual event promises $100,000 in prizes, as well as a brand new 2024 Buick Encore for one select nominee.

Brand Refresh for Tires Plus, Hibdon Tires Plus Begins

Logo updates include a single-color tire mark; a logo palette comprised of Tires Plus yellow, black and red; and refined typefaces.